The Guardian Part 2 By: Steve Bolin


The Guardian
Part 2
By: Steve Bolin

Surprise followed surprise when Kyria appeared between him and the mighty drake. Confusion mixed with grief and fear, leaving him overwhelmed. “What’s going on?” he asked with trepidation in his voice.

When I talked with you earlier, I created a mental conduit through which the dragon could understand your feelings – in his own primitive way. Never before has he encountered a human who didn’t want to kill him. He has known only fear and hatred. Today marks the first time that he has experienced genuine concern and kindness.

Caleb was temporarily speechless. Kyria’s presence gave him enough confidence to sheath his long sword and let it hang at his waist. He considered the angel’s words, but then looked at the field of skeletons, broken swords and crushed armor. “But what of these men he has killed? The King demands justice for these warriors who’ve died.”

Let the dragon respond in his own fashion, the angel replied.

Before Caleb could ask for an explanation, his mind filled with a stream of moving pictures. An aerial view revealed a vast field of grass and towering trees far below. A herd of deer ran across the pasture as a winged shadow fell across their path. Though unaccompanied by words, the paladin realized that the unique perspective displayed the dragon’s viewpoint.

The warrior felt like he was in a dream. Through the dragon’s eyes, he saw a ten point buck snatched abruptly, lifted into the air and swiftly flown back to a cavernous lair. He could actually feel an intense hunger dwindling as the dragon fed on its fresh meal.

Fear filled the drake as he sensed a malevolent presence nearby. Stretching his long neck toward the cave’s opening, the dragon clearly saw an armored man stealthily approaching with a sword and a shield. The human’s scent reeked of loathing and hatred.

The dragon did only that which instinct dictated. A fiery blast of blazing fury blew out as the creature exhaled an inferno of death. The would-be dragon slayer didn’t have time to flinch. Even as he stood, the steel of his armor melted like candle wax as flesh and clothing incinerated into powdery, black ash. Within seconds the charred skeleton toppled over.

The champion saw many other things as well. The dragon was very old, more than three centuries in age. The surrounding countryside had been his hunting ground long before Caleb’s kingdom ever existed. It was odd to experience the world from such an alien perspective. Eventually, he regained his own senses and once more saw Kyria standing before the mountainous creature.

Paladin Nazareth, do you understand why I’ve connected you to this creature’s thoughts?

“Yes guardian, I believe I do. This creature only acted in the defense of its life. Its instincts are no different than any of God’s other creatures.”

The dragon turned its great, golden head from side to side, causing Caleb to wonder if Kyria still maintained the mental connection. The scaled beast stretched its leathery wings with a snort, then lay on its belly. Posturing itself to a more comfortable position, the drake set its horned head on the ground. The animal looked at ease, comforted by the angel’s presence just as he was.

Your assessment is correct, holy warrior, but there is more.

Caleb wasn’t surprised. Nearly everything she said held deeper meaning when one looked beneath the surface. The angel was as old as time itself; the celestial beings were among God’s first creations. An ancient wisdom dwelled within Kyria’s sky blue eyes.

At last she continued. There are two male dragons left in all the world. This creature is one of them. He has lived a long life and will soon perish. Knowing this, knowing everything you’ve seen, can you now slay this beast with a clear conscience?

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About the Author

A life long resident of Indiana and full time writer, Steve Bolin has previously published poetry and short stories in, "Black Petals," and "Dark Moon Rising." His first fantasy novel is scheduled for release in early 2006.
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